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Drug Court: An Example of Balancing Justice and Mercy

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The road to recovery can be difficult without the support and care of others. In many cases, drug court can be an alternative to serving time in the criminal justice system. A faith-based drug court can balance both concepts of justice and mercy by teaching what’s important. This approach is similar to current compassion-based approaches to addiction treatment. Here are some of the main tenets of the court:

Serving Justice

According to the National Institute of Justice, drug courts are primarily used for problem-solving solutions. They are a fairly recent development in the criminal justice system aimed at understanding the root cause of criminal behavior. By following the guidelines, a participant of the program can begin to receive treatment. Christian-based therapy programs can help on the road to recovery by restoring faith to what may seem like a hopeless situation. Since the nation is re-evaluating addiction as less of a crime and more of a medical condition, the way that justice is handled regarding addiction is changing as well. Christian-based counseling that puts God in the center of your path toward a cure is a great way to approach this problem. Counseling is a common approach of judges in drug courts and is a common way to make sure that justice is still served. Justice is a concept that has been present in society since biblical times, so it’s important that justice is still present in our society. After all, as the Bible says in Psalms 106:3 (NIV), “Blessed are those who act justly, who always do what is right.”

Serving Mercy

Utilizing drug courts in the United States can help not only behavior but the importance of forgiveness. Forgiveness is something that God taught and drug courts often take this principle into practice. Those who have committed criminal offenses due to drug-related issues can be ostracized from their community. A possible criminal record can make this even more difficult to overcome. Faith-based recovery creates a structured setting where an emphasis on community and morality is strengthened through the power of belief and love. According to lawyer Brian Zeiger, while results of completion vary based on state, county, and case, it is possible for the final result to be that the conviction is not listed on a criminal record.

The Impact of Faith-Based Recovery

Most people suffering from addiction do not wish to be dependent on any substance. The road to recovery often comes after a debilitating obsession that takes over one’s life. Not only does the addict suffer, but the families surrounding the addict and any people harmed in the process of his/her addiction are also greatly impacted. To restore hope and faith in something other than criminal substances, the entire person’s being must be examined. According to the International Nurses Society on Addictions, studies show that religion and faith can play a very beneficial role in helping people to recover from addiction.

Treatment for the physical toll drugs have taken on the body is not enough to fight addictive behavior. Addiction can systematically eat away at the foundation of character and essentially steal the soul. When understanding how to rehabilitate someone who has become addicted to drugs, their spiritual foundation can help create the person they were meant to be. Once there is a sense of greater purpose, society can become a better place for everyone.

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